Pinterest Adds ‘Explore’ Tab, Including Autoplay Video Ads

Pinterest has today officially announced the launch of their new Explore tab.

As explained by Pinterest:

“Each time you drop by Explore, you get a snapshot of what’s trending on Pinterest, from emerging cultural trends (like “Hygge,” Danish for a simple life lived well) to surprising new flavors (like toasted sweet potato by the slice). And when we come across ideas we think you’d especially want to see, your Explore also includes a collection of your own personalized recommendations.”

You can search Explore via the home feed, which includes a combination of recommended Pins, or you can narrow down your results to by specific topics by swiping across the list. You can also select the subjects you want to see in your listing by editing your preferences (when you start out, the listing will be based on the topics you’ve engaged with on Pinterest thus far).

In addition to this, Pinterest is also rolling out a new autoplaying version of Promoted Video designed specifically for the Explore tab.

The videos can be expanded to full screen and advertisers will also be able to run additional content alongside promoted posts, which will auto-advance in sequence once the user has watched the first video. Pinterest says this will enable brands to build an “episodic viewing experience”.

Episodic sounds a little like storytelling, the latest social trend pioneered by Snapchat’s Stories, through which you can create narrative structures based on various additional elements that all come together as part of a wider piece – that formula has since been copied by Instagram, Facebook and to a lesser degree, Twitter, through their Moments tool. Given the trend of users towards that more contextual consumption model (100 million people are already using Instagram Stories every day), it makes sense for Pinterest to also follow suit.

In fact, the Explore tab in itself is very reminiscent of Instagram’s feature of the same name, and they recently added more video content to their version too.

Similar to Instagram, Pinterest has seen a big uptick in video consumption on the platform – there’s been a 60% increase in videos on the platform in the last year – so it makes sense for Pinterest to work to facilitate that user behavior and give advertisers a way to tap into that demand.

It’s another way for Pinterest to create a more engaging, enticing option for users and advertisers alike, and another key step in the steady evolution of the Pinterest platform.

Explore is rolling out to all Pinterest users from today – on mobile, you can access Explore via the magnifying glass at the bottom of the app, and on web, you click on the new compass icon at the top right.